Monday, June 19, 2006

VESL: Problem Posing at Work: English for Action

A good text for dealing with non-native speakers and their issues in the workplace. While written in Canada, the issues are universal. Teacher's guides are also available from Grass Roots Press, and the cost is about $25. per text.
by Elsa Auerbach and Nina Wallerstein

This student book contains 30 lessons that focus on workplace themes and issues related to the working lives of immigrants and refugees. Inspired by the problem-posing approach of Paulo Freire, this book invites learners to share and analyze their experiences, to acquire the language, skills, and information necessary for greater power over their circumstances, and to strategize together for changes. Originally published in 1987 as ESL for Action, this revised edition is updated to incorporate a focus on the effects of globalization on workers' lives while its scope is expanded to include information about Canada as well as the U.S. It includes authentic photos and stories of workers active in their workplaces and communities. The text is intended for intermediate to advanced ESL students in workplace, pre-vocational, vocational, community-based, union, and labour education programs. (335 pp.)
Table of Contents
Unit I: Learning English
Unit II: Working In A New Country
Unit III: Power at Work
Unit IV: Making Money
Unit V: Getting Through the Day
Unit VI: Health and Safety
Unit VII: Moving Toward Equality
Unit VIII: Unions
Unit XI: The Big Picture
Teaching Guide

Thursday, June 15, 2006

General: Adaptive and Assistive Technologies

Adaptive and assistive technologies compensate for functional limitations in order to enhance and increase learning, independence, mobility, communication, environmental control and choice.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Workplace: Employability Skills

ATI Skills Tutor Software:

More than 100 lessons help youth and adult learners build the skills they need to succeed in today's job market. This research-based program teaches learners how to find, obtain, and keep a job.
Employability Skills Online is divided into 4 modules:
Career Decision Making
Job Seeking Skills
Work Maturity Skills
Worker Effectiveness Skills
Screen Shots
A comprehensive Management and Assessment System identifies skill deficiencies and generates performance reports. The program is offered online and on CD-ROM and serves adult education and vocation programs, corrections, special education, and is ideal for any middle or high school-to-work program. ESO also meets transition requirements as mandated by IDEA and the Goals 2000: Educate America Act.

Purchasing contact: Jeff Small, 888-391-3237

ESL: Citizenship

ATI: Achievement Technologies Software

Ideal for teaching teens and adults to be responsible citizens, this program includes pre-and posttests to identify skill deficiencies, prescribe remedial training, and a management system to document competence and report progress.
Citizenship Skills adds value to any after-school or summer school program, family literacy, character education or intervention program. Over 86 lessons in 10 categories cover a variety of topics and life coping strategies in:
The Rights of Citizens
Understanding Economics
Building Self-Esteem
Good Citizen Values
Financial Responsibility
How our Government Works
Responsible Behavior
Problem Solving

Purchasing contact: Jeff Small, 888-391-3237

Thursday, June 01, 2006

For Fun: Listening to Mona Lisa

Did you ever wonder what the Mona Lisa would have sounded like? Or Leonardo da Vinci himself? Yahoo News reported that a Japanese acoustics expert may have resolved that question. "Dr Matsumi Suzuki, who generally uses his skills to help with criminal investigations, measured the face and hands of Leonardo da Vinci's famous 16th century portrait to estimate her height and create a model of her skull.
"Once we have that, we can create a voice very similar to that of the person concerned," Suzuki told Reuters in an interview at his Tokyo office last week..."In Mona Lisa's case, the lower part of her face is quite wide and her chin is pointed," Suzuki explained. "The extra volume means a relatively low voice, while the pointed chin adds mid-pitch tones," he added.
So although she is known as the woman with the enigmatic smile, her voice is no longer a mystery. It's a Japanese site and Mona of course speaks Italian, but it's interesting nonetheless.